The Obama administration is weighing the release of blind Sheik Omar Abdel-Rahman — the spiritual adviser to the 1993 World Trade Center bombers — in a stunning goodwill gesture toward Egypt that has touched off a political firestorm, officials said.
On Monday, TheBlaze was the first to report about the story surrounding Egypt, the Obama administration and Omar Abdel-Rahman, the infamous “Blind Sheik.” According to a source close to the Obama administration, the U.S. State Department is actively considering negotiations with the Egyptian government for the transfer of custody of Omar Abdel-Rahman, also known as “the Blind Sheikh,” for humanitarian and health reasons, a source close to the the Obama administration told TheBlaze.
The Department of Justice, however, told TheBlaze that Rahman is serving a life sentence and is not considered for possible “release.” Previous calls to the State Department were referred to the Department of Justice and so far, the State Department has neither confirmed nor denied the report.
Omar Abdel Rahman, was the mastermind of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and a man who had plotted to murder Americans in the hundreds of thousands by blowing up the Lincoln and Holland Tunnels in New York. He was convicted in 1995 and is locked away in the medical wing of the Butner Federal Correctional Institution in North Carolina for his role in the Trade Center bombing.
Former federal prosecutor Andrew McCarthy believes the deal to release Rahman has already been reached by the administration, and they are just waiting until after the election to announce it. McCarthy believes this is why the DOJ so strongly ruled out Rahman’s “release” but said nothing against his “transfer.”
McCarthy was lead prosecutor in Rahman’s case.
According to Erica Ritz from TheBlaze, “The U.S. State Department is currently in negotiations with the Egyptian government for the transfer of custody of Omar Abdel-Rahman, also known as ‘the Blind Sheikh,’ for humanitarian and health reasons,” conflicting with the statement from the Department of Justice, that insists his release is not a consideration.
Former State Department senior official Christian Whiton appeared on Real News From TheBlaze. She said,
Unfortunately, I think it is [conceivable]. And it’s unfortunate because it amounts to negotiating with terrorists… but after all, this administration was inching closer and closer to some sort of trade of terrorists with the Taliban, so perhaps it’s considering the same with [Egyptian President Morsi].
This news was subsequently picked up by Fox News which had obtained a three-page intelligence report showing that two days before the deadly attack on the U.S. Consulate in Libya, a statement incited “sons of Egypt” to pressure America to release the so-called blind sheikh “even if it requires burning the embassy down with everyone in it.”
The web statement, apparently posted on Sept. 9, was in reference to the embassy in Egypt. It preceded a throng of demonstrators breaching the U.S. Embassy wall in Cairo, supposedly in protest over an anti-Islam film. Obama administration officials claim that attackers in Libya then took their cue from Cairo and seized the opportunity to attack the consulate in Benghazi.
The DHS report, released on Sept. 11, said an “unidentified user” on an Arabic-language forum posted the statement “inciting Egyptians to target the U.S. Embassy, indicating the U.S. Embassy shouldn’t remain in Egypt” until Omar Abdel-Rahman, also known as the blind sheikh, is released. Abdel-Rahman, who played a role in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and other attacks, is serving a life sentence in U.S. prison.
The DHS document described the source of the warning as “fairly reliable.”
The Sept. 9 statement said “the time has come for a strong movement from you, O sons of Egypt, to release the detained” sheikh. “Let your slogan be: No to the American Embassy in Egypt until our detained sheikh is released.”
It continued: “Starting now, let the faithful among you form follow-up committees in charge of taking the necessary measures to force America to release the sheikh — even if it requires burning the embassy down with everyone in it.”
Then, on Thursday, The New York Post also cited a source who corroborated the story. The outlet backed up the report that TheBlaze initially broke, writing:
The Obama administration is weighing the release of blind Sheik Omar Abdel-Rahman — the spiritual adviser to the 1993 World Trade Center bombers — in a stunning goodwill gesture toward Egypt that has touched off a political firestorm, officials said yesterday.
The Egyptian government “asked for his release,” an administration source told The Post — and Rep. Peter King (R-LI) confirmed the request is being considered.
Rep. Peter T. King (R-NY), Chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security, demanded that the Obama Administration reject Egypt’s request that the U.S. release Omar Abdel-Rahman from federal prison. Abdel-Rahman, known as the “blind sheikh,” inspired the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and is serving a life sentence for his role in a plot to conduct assassinations and destroy bridges, tunnels and other landmarks in New York City.
In a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Chairman King joined seven other key GOP Chairmen in expressing great concern about reports that the Obama Administration is considering the release of Abdel-Rahman. The reports come a week after the attack on the U.S. Embassy in Libya during which U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens and three other Americans were killed. Anti-American protests have spread throughout the Middle East and Egypt where protestors stormed the U.S. Embassy in Cairo. The violence in Egypt has been attributed, in part, to that government’s demands for the blind sheikh’s release.
King and the other Chairmen wrote: “Succumbing to the demands of a country whose citizens threaten our embassy and the Americans serving in it would send a clear message that acts of violence will be responded to with appeasement rather than strength….The release of Abdel-Rahman or any terrorist who plots to kill innocent Americans would be seen for what it is – a sign of weakness and a lack of resolve by the United States and its President.”
A copy of the signed letter is available HERE.
In a fiery speech to hundreds of thousands in Cairo’s Tahrir Square, Mohammed Morsi took the oath of office — and vowed to obtain freedom for the blind sheik, Omar Abdel Rahman.
“I see banners for Omar Abdel Rahman’s family, and for prisoners arrested according to martial rulings and detainees from the beginning of the revolution,” said Morsi.
“It is my duty to make every effort, and I will beginning tomorrow to secure their release, among them Omar Abdel Rahman.”
So much for those who insist that Morsi, the radical Muslim Brotherhood’s man, is a moderate — and that the group itself has moved beyond its Islamist origins.
After all, we’re talking about the same blind sheik now serving a life term in US prison for masterminding the 1993 World Trade Center bombing and plotting attacks on other New York landmarks.
The same blind sheik whose fatwa was cited by Osama bin Laden as religious justification for the 9/11 attacks.
The same blind sheik whose terrorist movement, Gamaa Ismaliya, elected members to Egypt’s new Islamist-dominated parliament.
Just last week, it was disclosed that one of those legislators had been granted a visa, in apparent defiance of US law, and been given a sit-down with Deputy National Security Adviser Denis McDonough.
And what did he do with this valuable face time?
Why, demand the release of Omar Abdel Rahman — the blind sheik.
To release him would be a spectacular endorsement of jihad terror on Obama’s part. But then again, would anyone be surprised?